Fishing pole, old car among bike rack winners

In the last hours of Ballard SeafoodFest, Sustainable Ballard announced the winners of the Ballard Bike Rack Design Contest.

Over 100 entries were submitted, many from middle school and high school students. The judges include architects, designers and the Chamber of Commerce. All are Ballard residents.

Sustainable Ballard’s Craig Benjamin (left) announced the six winners. They’ll get to see their designs built and placed around Ballard as early as September. Three of the locations are already determined, but the other three have yet to be approved. Click through below for the winning designs…

Typewriter keys form this bike rack designed by Henrietta Coffington, which will be placed right in front of the Ballard Library.

These poles with Native-American style orcas on top were designed by Linton Rowan. They’ll be positioned at the Ballard Locks.

Bicycles hang from this big fishing pole, which will also be placed at the Locks. Design by Marin Bork and Katie Bang.

Middle schooler Kaila Crosby designed this bike rack, which was a favorite among the judges. The proposed location is along Ballard Ave.

These circles by Carl Sanden give this bike rack a trendy, futuristic look. Also proposed for Ballard Ave.

And finally, the “Fossilmobile” is the shell of an old car, by Jason Hirst. The proposed location is Ballard Ave., but Sustainable Ballard admits it may be a little challenging to get buy-in to install it in Old Ballard.

No, the Googie design did not win. “The judges weren’t really into it,” Benjamin said. Some had hoped that it could be placed at Market St. and 15th Ave. in remembrance of the Manning’s Cafeteria.

Scenes from the ‘Couture Coverall Contest’

“Ballard’s traditional costume is really a pair of old coveralls,” explains the SeafoodFest program, “not a Scandinavian folk costume, as many might imagine.” So in the spirit of honoring industrial Ballard, contestants in the “Seventh Annual Slotky Memorial Couture Coverall Contest” took the stage.

The goal is to show originality and Ballard fashion flair with a pair of coveralls. And today, Old and New Ballard alike were well represented.

That’s Esther from the Nordic Heritage Museum walking down the “catwalk” on the left. And, ahem, that’s Sonya from BalMar on the right.

Um, this is “Lily the Riveter” sporting coveralls.

But in the end, the winner is Dorte Brandsrub, who dressed and played the part of a woman from the Duwamish tribe in Ballard back in the 1800s.

New record in lutefisk eating contest

While many Ballardites love their seafood, lutefisk is an acquired taste.

One of the most popular events at this weekend’s SeafoodFest is the lutefisk eating contest. Ten contestants with iron stomachs battled it for $150.

If you’re not familiar with lutefisk, well, it’s a gelatinous white fish that’s soaked in lye and reeks to high heaven. A Scandinavian staple. Here, contest organizers pour two pounds of liquid lutefisk into each bowl. Mmm, tasty.

More than a hundred people packed every square inch of Bergen place to watch.

The previous record was just 18 seconds. But amazingly, a man named Einer Johannsen smashed the record by slurping down two pounds in just 7 seconds!

Here’s the winner in the blue-checkered shirt. “I poured it down like a pitcher of Rainier Beer,” Johannsen told me after the contest. “It has a wonderful taste.” He said he grew up eating lutefisk as a kid: a clear advantage. We shot video of the contest below (it happened so fast, we missed the winning gulp.)

“I overheard him talking to a Ballard Market employee, and he just got his captain’s license and works on a fishing boat,” writes My Ballard reader Lakreitz. And did you notice the guy sitting next to him? “He hadn’t even drank but a few sips and he was shaking uncontrollably,” Lakreitz writes. “He was trying so hard to not vomit – fortunately for all in the crowd, he did not lose it.”

Long lines at SeafoodFest salmon barbecue

SeafoodFest began 34 years ago as a salmon feast to raise money for the Ballard Chamber of Commerce. Today, the popular salmon BBQ is still a chamber fundraiser and the heart and soul of this weekend’s event.

For most of the midday hours, a long line stretched down 22nd Ave. Seafood lovers waited in anticipation for an $8 serving of salmon.

Master griller Warren Aakervik holds court for his 33rd annual barbecue. Behind him are two big enclosed grills with burning alder inside.

Big fillets of salmon, donated by Trident Seafood, are placed onto the grill.

The finished product. Yum! Well worth the wait.

Critical Mass turns violent on Capitol Hill

This is out of the neighborhood, but nonetheless interesting considering Critical Mass came through Ballard the last time around, resulting in quite the discussion here on My Ballard. Last night on Capitol Hill, Critical Mass cyclists surrounded a Subaru and assaulted the driver after two riders were hit. The sequence of events is unclear: did the driver hit the cyclists while attempting to escape? Or was the driver threatening them to begin with? One thing is clear, though. Tension between motorists and cyclists has been intensifying of late, especially as more people are riding their bikes to work.

Update: More details on what happened from the Seattle Times
Earlier this month: Bike road rage on Burke Gilman ‘missing link’

House fire on Phinney Ridge

Updated: More than a dozen fire units responded to a fully-involved house fire at 5511 2nd Ave. NW on Phinney Ridge at 7:40 p.m. Friday evening.

As I drove to the scene from Ballard, I could see smoke billowing up from over a mile away. (Photo by My Ballard reader Nina.)

Flames were shooting out the back of the two-story home, which was hard to see from the street. Both floors were on fire.

Over a hundred neighbors around the home watched the firefighters at work. A next door neighbor quickly climbed onto his roof with a garden hose.

Medic units checked out one patient, presumably the homeowner, who has minor injuries. A little less than an hour after the call the fire was out. No word on the cause, and we’ll update as we learn more.

Update: The Seattle Fire Department says the cause appears to be accidental: “discarded smoking materials” that caught fire. The homeowner was in the backyard at the time of the fire, and there are no official injuries. No word on a damage estimate, although to my untrained eye the house is a total loss.

Earlier this month: House fire on 2nd Ave. NW and 52nd St.

Preview the building replacing Sunset Bowl

This Monday night is the first design review meeting, but Avalon has already released its preliminary proposed designs for the apartment and retail building replacing Sunset Bowl on Market St.

This is its preferred design of the three proposals. It’s a six-story building with a center courtyard and 234 units. The building covers the entire block. The front (bottom) faces Market St. You can see Burger King to the left.

Here’s a look at the ground floor with 13,900 square feet of retail and 294 parking spots. Again, these are preliminary proposals without many details — there’s no mention of specific retailers (or a bowling alley), for example — but you get an idea of the building’s size. You can see the full deck here (.pdf). The first public design review meeting will be held Monday at 8 p.m. in the Ballard High School Library. (Thanks Marie for the link!)